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Names: My newspaper column: Now featuring a time-traveling nurse and an Omaha elephant


Ormond
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21 hours ago, Xray the Enforcer said:

Hey Ormond -- I'm curious. During these kinds of discussions, which ones piqued your curiosity and which ones gave you pause? And where was the most dissent? 

I am the moderator of the meeting where ANS votes on the Names of the Year and so do not vote myself.

The nominations that gave me the most "pause" were a few I didn't even mention in the newspaper column, which were obviously made by someone trying to promote a book they themselves had written or a product whose trade name they had created.

We've never had "dissent" in terms of someone protesting a winner. We certainly have had discussion and some votes were closer than others. Aleppo won the final vote by 3 over Drumpf this year.

The task of the voters is to vote for names which showed the impact of names and naming in and of itself the past year. In that sense I can see that Drumpf was a good choice as Personal Name of the Year. In saying that, though, I am not endorsing John Oliver's use of it, because it makes me a little queasy. Donald Trump didn't choose to change the name himself, and what does using Drumpf to make fun of Trump say to anyone who is still named Drumpf in Germany or the US? Is it really better to make fun of someone's ancestral name than to make fun of other things about their ancestors they cannot control, like their race or occupations? This seems a bit like people in another thread on this board using the "wrong" pronouns for a particular transgender person who may not deserve "respect", without realizing that hurts all transgender persons. I worry that the mocking of "Drumpf" has the potential to hurt many people with "funny surnames" who do not deserve it.

Edited by Ormond
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On 1/22/2017 at 9:40 PM, Baitac said:

I found it interesting and a little confusing that "Hamilton" won for fictional name. Also surprised that Obama wasn't a choice.

No one nominated Obama.

"Hamilton" is a "fictional name" as the title of the musical, which is a fictional presentation even though based on historical events, just as historical novels are fiction even though based on real events.

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Here's the link to today's column. Sorry I did not have room to mention Carroll O'Connor. Also, in case you are wondering, the word "carol" as in "Christmas carol" has nothing to do with the name -- though I suspect that occasionally babies born during the Christmas season have been named Carol because parents made that association.  -- I saw Carol Channing myself in a performance of "Hello, Dolly!" about 20 years ago. She was still great in the role then even though she was in her 70s.  

http://www.omaha.com/living/evans-once-popular-carol-has-royal-roots/article_bdd163c8-35ca-5996-83e6-c3612c8718ed.html

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  • 2 weeks later...

Carol seems to be a name from the generation of my parents. Caroline is more popular now. I have a question. My grandmother named my Aunt Vivien. She claimed that Vivian was the male version of said name. Can you confirm or deny? If you want to or have time. Thank you!

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On 2/9/2017 at 11:29 PM, Baitac said:

Carol seems to be a name from the generation of my parents. Caroline is more popular now. I have a question. My grandmother named my Aunt Vivien. She claimed that Vivian was the male version of said name. Can you confirm or deny? If you want to or have time. Thank you!

In Britain they normally think of "Vivian" as a male spelling and "Vivien" as a female one, but that distinction has never been made in the USA, where "Vivian" has always been the most common spelling for girls. This makes Vivian/Vivien similar to Leslie/Lesley: in England Leslie is considered masculine and Lesley feminine, but in the USA no such distinction is made.

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2 hours ago, Ormond said:

In Britain they normally think of "Vivian" as a male spelling and "Vivien" as a female one, but that distinction has never been made in the USA, where "Vivian" has always been the most common spelling for girls. This makes Vivian/Vivien similar to Leslie/Lesley: in England Leslie is considered masculine and Lesley feminine, but in the USA no such distinction is made.

My Grandma Isabel was a very proper lady. She named my Aunt after Vivien Leigh. My Mom's name is Beatriz, a Queen's name. I miss my Grandma and Mom. Thank you for the clarification. :)

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6 hours ago, Ormond said:

In Britain they normally think of "Vivian" as a male spelling and "Vivien" as a female one, but that distinction has never been made in the USA, where "Vivian" has always been the most common spelling for girls. This makes Vivian/Vivien similar to Leslie/Lesley: in England Leslie is considered masculine and Lesley feminine, but in the USA no such distinction is made.

Now that I think of it, isn't the same true of Lindsay/Lindsey?

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15 hours ago, mormont said:

Now that I think of it, isn't the same true of Lindsay/Lindsey?

I don't know -- you tell me! In Scotland, is one of these considered "masculine" and the other "feminine"? There certainly isn't any distinction by spelling that way in the USA.

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11 hours ago, Hereward said:

And Francis/Frances, and Gabriel/Gabrielle, though the latter may not count as they are pronounced differently so it probably belongs with Justin/Justine and Daniel/Danielle, etc.

Francis and Frances DO have the gender distinction in the USA. 

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3 minutes ago, Ormond said:

I don't know -- you tell me! In Scotland, is one of these considered "masculine" and the other "feminine"? There certainly isn't any distinction by spelling that way in the USA.

In the UK, Lindsay is masculine and Lindsey feminine.

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Carolus Magnus as the most important European monarch of the early middle ages presumeably led to krol, kral, korol meaning "king" in several slavic languages, similarly to Caesar -> Kaiser in German and Czar in Russian.

That in English so many names can serve as male and female names without or with only a slight change in spelling is very confusing for a foreigner. While most language have a few such cases they are usually rare.

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12 hours ago, Ormond said:

Here's today's column. I had no idea until I researched this that Chaucer was the one who made Valentine's Day a day for lovers.

http://www.omaha.com/living/evans-chaucer-gave-love-nudge-to-st-valentine/article_55fb685a-9fdf-5839-8d71-0cf07a695fb9.html

 

Awww. Happy Saint Valentine's Day Ormond!

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  • 2 weeks later...

Here's today's column. There is an Italian name Gavino which has no etymological connection with Gavin, but some Italian-Americans may have used Gavin as an Anglicization of that name.

http://www.omaha.com/living/evans-roots-of-gavin-go-back-to-knights-of-the/article_9d05fef7-2317-5215-bb75-bcd9da7278ef.html

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  • Ormond changed the title to Names: My newspaper column: Now featuring a time-traveling nurse and an Omaha elephant

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